TIGA has launched a new accreditation system for universities and colleges offering games courses in the UK.
Each course will be judged on its own merits and must ensure it works closely with the game industry and can stay up to date and remain relevant. The scheme is open to a wide variety of skills such as coding, art and design.
A panel of industry and academic experts will examine the courses to judge whether they are developing industry skills, as well as other transferable skills, such as communication, team working and problem solving. Success rates for graduates finding work in games or related sectors will also be assessed.
Universities are also required to show they have sufficient hardware, software and staff, the right curriculum and student support to deliver their courses.
Accreditation will last for five years at a time, which time point they will be re-examined. The scheme is only open to TIGA education members.
The first Universities to have courses accredited through the scheme including the University of Portsmouth, Sheffield Hallam University and Bournemouth University.
The TIGA accreditation system will be separate to the Creative Skillset accreditations awarded to a number of universities in the past.
Speaking to Develop, Rebellion CTO and Creative Skillset video games industry council vice chair Chris Kingsley said the trade body’s scheme is not designed to compete with Skillset, but complement it.
"The TIGA accreditation system is designed to complement rather than compete with Creative Skillset, it is about offering universities and colleges more support and guidance from the games industry,” said Kingsley.
"There are many ways of encouraging and recognising excellence, for example the Investors In People and ISO 9000 accreditation systems. Having a complementary range of high quality benchmarking options strengthens educational institutions, businesses and wider industry alike.
"TIGA is naturally very involved in Creative Skillset, for example Giselle Stewart is a TIGA board member and Chair of Creative Skillset’s Video Games Industry Council, I myself am vice-chair, and I also chair TIGA’s education committee.
"Universities and colleges can also apply for both TIGA and Creative Skillset accreditation, it’s not a case of ‘either or’, there is a great deal of value in both. Ultimately we want strengthen the links between industry and academia, promote best practice and highlight excellence, the introduction of the new TIGA accreditation system will help us all achieve those goals."